Making friends as a kid is easy. You walk up to a potential friend, you say “Hi, my name is so-and-so.” Maybe you even cut right to the chase and ask if he or she wants to be buddies. Introducing yourself is considered perfectly mannerly as an adult, but you’re going to get weird looks if you start asking people you meet if they want to be your new bestie.
Making friends WITH kids – as in, you have kids of your own and are looking to meet people like you – is a little easier since having a baby suddenly gives you something in common with just about everyone in one way or another. But judging by all the articles talking about how hard it is to meet other moms, still not easy-peasy mac-and-cheesy.
So want to know a secret? Playdates are an easy way to get that precious in with the moms you want to meet and they’re a lot easier to suggest than a coffee date. Kids? They can be mean, but when it comes to hangouts (especially with snacks and/or a movie) they’re not all that picky. Moms, on the other hand, can be more discerning.
Going out for coffee? Whoa, there fast mover! But a playdate? My kids are climbing the walls over at my house…
Why are playdates a great way to meet other moms – moms who may just have similar interests or are desperate for an hour of grownup conversation?
First, because moms are busy and hanging out via a playdate is the ultimate form of mommy multitasking. Socialize your kids while socializing yourself! And second, because there is no pressure. If you and your playdate pal don’t hit it off, you can focus on the kids and it’s still time well spent. Having a couple of toddlers running around underfoot can be a great antidote to any awkwardness that arises.
Odds are if you schedule enough playdates for your kids, you’re going to meet moms with similar interests, meet moms with similar parenting styles, and meet moms who look at life a lot like you do. And when you do, it certainly won’t hurt that your kids will be occupying each other so you two can get down to the business of gushing over the latest Downton Abbey.
Or, you know, whatever it is you discover you both have a passion for.